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Preview: Panthers at Lightning

Newcomer James Reimer to start in goal for Florida, Ben Bishop will play for Tampa Bay

by Corey Long / NHL.com Correspondent

PANTHERS (2-0-0) at LIGHTNING (2-0-0)

7:30 p.m. ET; SUN, FS-F, NHL.TV

 

Panthers team scope

Goaltender James Reimer will make his first start with the Florida Panthers after Roberto Luongo played in victories against the Detroit Red Wings and New Jersey Devils. On July 1, the Panthers signed Reimer to a five-year contract with an annual average value of $3.4 million. "They're obviously a skilled team, have a lot of guys who can shoot the pill," Reimer told the Miami Herald on Monday. "It should be a good challenge." Forward Jaromir Jagr's next goal will be the 750th of his NHL career. Jagr is third all-time behind Wayne Gretzky (849) and Gordie Howe (801). The next-closest active player is Colorado Avalanche forward Jarome Iginla, who has 611. "I've never played with a guy that's so passionate," forward Jonathan Marchessault said of the 44-year-old. "He's just loves hockey. That way he communicates makes it easier for a guy like me jumping on his line. Hopefully everybody can help him get it."

 

Lightning team scope

The Tampa Bay Lightning are 2-0-0 despite giving up the first two goals in each game. Defenseman Victor Hedman said playing from behind isn't the best way to win, even though the Lightning have the firepower to make comebacks. "Obviously, you want to have the lead instead of being down two goals at the start of the game," Hedman said. "But we always come back and we believe in ourselves. Hopefully we can turn around the start of the game in the future." Tampa Bay is trying to start 3-0-0 for the second straight season, but coach Jon Cooper wants to keep the momentum going beyond Tuesday. After winning its first three games last season, Tampa Bay went 2-5-2 during the remainder of October. "You want to have a good start," Cooper said. "The last thing you want to do, and we learned this last year, is [start] chasing a playoff spot come December." The Lightning will honor Vincent Lecavalier during the game. Lecavalier, the No. 1 pick in the 1998 NHL Draft, is the Lightning's all-time leader with 383 goals in 1,037 games. He played on the 2004 Stanley Cup championship team.

 

Panthers projected lineup

Jonathan Marchessault - Aleksander Barkov - Jaromir Jagr
Jussi Jokinen - Vincent Trocheck - Reilly Smith
Jared McCann - Denis Malgin - Colton Sceviour
Greg McKegg - Derek MacKenzie - Shane Harper

Keith Yandle - Aaron Ekblad
Michael Matheson - Jason Demers
Mark Pysyk - Alex Petrovic

James Reimer
Roberto Luongo

Scratched: Shawn Thornton, Steven Kampfer
Injured: Jonathan Huberdeau (lower leg), Nick Bjugstad (broken hand)

 

Lightning projected lineup

Ondrej Palat - Steven Stamkos - Jonathan Drouin
Alex Killorn - Tyler Johnson - Nikita Kucherov
Vladislav Namestnikov - Valtteri Filppula - Brayden Point
Cedric Paquette - Brian Boyle - J.T. Brown

Victor Hedman - Anton Stralman
Jason Garrison - Andrej Sustr
Nikita Nesterov - Braydon Coburn

Ben Bishop
Andrei Vasilevskiy

Scratched: Slater Koekkoek
Injured: Ryan Callahan (hip)

 

Status report

Reimer is expected to get 30-35 starts this year behind Luongo, who's 37 and had hip surgery in May … Bishop will play after Vasilevskiy made his first start of the season in a 3-2 victory against the New Jersey Devils on Saturday. … … Cooper said he hopes to work Koekkoek into the lineup before the end of Tampa Bay's season-opening four-game homestand.

 

Who's hot

Marchessault, who played 45 games for Tampa Bay last season, has two goals and two assists through two games. … Killorn leads the Lightning with two goals and three points through two games.

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